There is about a week to go in the 2018 legislative session and lots of work is happening in St. Paul to ensure a smooth and orderly finish. While much of the heavy lifting of end-of-session negotiations is taking place in conference committees, the House body approved a number of standalone bills this week.
I am most proud of the legislation we passed this week that will help our veterans. Since coming to the legislature, I have made it one of my top priorities to ensure our veterans are taken care of. That’s why I was so happy to support these bills.
Here is a brief summary of a handful of the veterans’ bills we passed this week:
Senate File 2692— requires the Department of Military Affairs to make it easier for members of the National Guard to learn about and receive life insurance through the National Guard Association of Minnesota
House File 3199— clarifies that the state’s Military Code needs to procedurally and substantively conform to the Federal Government’s Military Code
Senate File 1703—designates July 16 Atomic Veterans Day to honor United States military personnel who were exposed to atomic radiation during the course of their service.
In addition to these bills that were passed off the House floor, the House State Government Finance Committee held a hearing this week to discuss a plan that would use excess funds from the Vikings stadium reserve account and spend it on the construction of three new veterans homes here in Minnesota. The homes would be built in Preston, Bemidji, and Montevideo.
Unfortunately the Governor has signaled that he may be unwilling to sign this legislation into law. This is unfortunate and I think our plan is a great idea and something that we should all be able to support. The stadium reserve account already has more than sufficient funds to help pay for the state’s share of construction. Stay tuned on this.
Also taking place this week was an assurance from the federal government that standard Minnesota driver’s licenses will be valid to board aircraft until at least October, 2020. This is great news as it gives the state time to make sure that folks that want REAL ID compliant licenses are able to acquire them. REAL ID compliant licenses are set to be rolled out this fall.
That’s all for this week’s update. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me to share any thoughts or concerns you may have about state government or the job I'm doing as your representative. It would be great to talk with you. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-8237 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks and have a great weekend,